How many liters of saliva does a person secrete in his entire life?

On a typical day, the average person produces between 0.5 and 1.5 liters of saliva – a truly surprising number, given that many people drink less water each day than they produce.

If taking the low average of 0.7 liters per day, this equates to about 255.5 liters of saliva a year. Over an average life of about 80 years, that amounts to about 20,440 liters . That is equivalent to a small swimming pool filled with saliva .

After knowing the number, many people will ask the question: Why do we produce so much saliva?

How many liters of saliva does a person secrete in his entire life?
During his lifetime, a person can produce enough saliva to fill a small swimming pool. (Photo: internet)

Accordingly, saliva is produced by our bodies for good reasons. Saliva is a complex biological fluid that plays many important roles in your mouth. For example, it contains the starch-degrading enzyme amylase, which provides calcium and phosphate that help remineralize tooth enamel and is an important gatekeeper in protecting and fighting disease-causing microorganisms that enter your body. through the oral cavity.

Saliva is mainly composed of water (99%) and a mixture of proteins, electrolytes, and digestive enzymes (1%).

It is produced by many different glands , three major and many minor, located in your mouth. Three major glands – the parotid, submandibular, and sublingual – contribute 90% of the total saliva produced, while the remaining 10% are secreted by accessory glands.

In the unstimulated state (the state of rest when you’re not eating), about two-thirds of all saliva is produced by the submandibular glands. The parotid gland comes into play when stimulated (usually by chewing, aka taste stimulation) and is responsible for about 50% of the saliva in the mouth in this state. However, the sublingual glands contribute a small percentage of saliva in both the unexcited and stimulated states.

Saliva has been used around the world by ancient people for more than 2,000 years, with the belief that saliva can cure diseases. Ancient Chinese traditional medicine practitioners believed that saliva and blood were “brothers”, as they both came from the same source in the body.

Famous thinkers, such as Pliny the Elder (who lived in the first century AD) and Albert the Great (1193-1280) both praised the benefits of saliva for its ability to repel snakes and other things. bad luck, as well as promote healing. Even in the late 19th century, the supposed healing properties of saliva were celebrated by some physicians.

At present, people no longer believe in saliva as a healing agent, but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t work in modern medicine. Today, it plays an important role as a diagnostic tool , as it can provide important insights into the overall health of the body. Because saliva is made up of so many components, saliva can contain many disease-signalling biomarkers, useful for disease identification as well as for monitoring and predicting disease progression.

Furthermore, this substance is readily available and unlike blood, it can be sampled by non-invasive methods, making it easy to analyze. Techniques have even been developed to use saliva as an indicator of prostate cancer.